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Japan Enters the Post-Abe Era: More of the Same or New Directions?

September 30, 2020 @ 4:00 pm

Japan Enters the Post-Abe Era Event Hero Image

Just days after becoming the longest sitting Prime Minster in Japan’s history, Shinzo Abe unexpectedly announced his resignation on August 28, citing serious health issues. The next Prime Minister will face unprecedented domestic and foreign challenges ranging from Japan’s demographic crisis, the rise of China’s military and economic power, a global pandemic which is driving a world recession, and doubts about America’s longstanding security commitment to Japan. What will be the policy priorities of the next Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, and how will he differ from PM Abe in content and style of leadership?

The Japan Society of Boston and the Japan Society of Northern California are proud to jointly present a program to explore the opportunities and pitfalls of the post-Abe era. Please join us online on September 30, 2020 to hear three of the top experts on Japan’s domestic and foreign policy talk about what the change in leadership means for Japan and for its relationship with the US.


Date & Times:

US: September 30, 2020
4:00 p.m. (Pacific Time)
7:00 p.m. (Eastern Time)

Japan: October 1, 2020
8:00 a.m.

Price: FREE!


4:00-4:05 — Welcome, Zoom tutorial  and Opening Remark Yuko Handa, Managing Director, Japan Society of Boston
Introducing speakers by Larry Greenwood, Member of the Board, Japan Society of Northern California
4:05-4:15 — Keiichiro Asao | Former Member of the House of Representatives
4:15-4:25 — Tobias Harris | Senior Vice President, Teneo
4:25-4:35 — Christina L. Davis | Professor of Government and Director of the Program on U.S.-Japan Relations, Harvard University
4:35-4:50 — Moderated discussion by Larry Greenwood
4:50-5:00 — Q&A
5:00-5:05 — Closing Remark Larry Greenwood


Christina L. Davis | Professor of Government, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University
Tobias Harris | Senior Vice President, Teneo
Moderator, Glen Fukushima | Center for American Progress

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Keiichiro Asao Photo

Keiichiro Asao (浅尾 慶一郎) | Former Member of the House of Representatives
Keiichiro Asao is a Japanese Politician. Graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Tokyo, he joined Industrial Bank of Japan in 1987, receiving MBA in 1992 from Stanford University while working at the bank. Leaving the bank in 1995, he was elected to the House of Councillors for the first time in 1998 to represent Kanagawa Prefecture. He was re-elected in 2004, and was appointed the Shadow Foreign Minister by the DPJ leader Seiji Maehara. He was later expelled from the DPJ after announcing he would run for a district seat in Kanagawa during the 2009 General election, joining Your Party as a founding member one month later. He later headed Your Party after breakout of a scandal of the Party Leader Yoshimi Watanabe. In 2014, he decided to dissolve Your Party over dispute of the direction of the party and returned US14 million public grant money to the government for the first time in Japanese political history. Later that year he was elected to the House of Representatives for the third term. After failure to reform Japanese politics by using a venture party as a vehicle, he has joined the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and seeks to reform the system from inside the ruling party. He has served in the Japanese Diet for 19 years in total.




Christina Davis Photo

Christina L. Davis | Professor of Government and Director of the Program on U.S.-Japan Relations, Harvard University
Christina L. Davis is a Professor of Government in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, and a Susan S. and Kenneth L. Wallach Professor at the Radcliffe Institute. She is the Director of the Program on U.S.-Japan Relations at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and serves as co-executive editor of the Japanese Journal of Political Science. Her research interests include the politics and foreign policy of Japan and East Asia and the study of international organizations, with a focus on trade policy, and her research has been published in leading political science journals.




Tobias Harris Photo

Tobias Harris | Senior Vice President, Teneo
Tobias Harris is an expert on Japanese politics, and worked in 2006-2007 on the staff of Keiichiro Asao, at that time a member of the upper house of the Japanese Diet and shadow foreign minister for the Democratic Party of Japan, for whom he conducted research on foreign policy and Japan’s relations with the United States. He was the Fellow for Economy, Trade, and Business at Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA from 2014-2020. His latest book, The Iconoclast: Shinzo Abe and the New Japan will be published this fall.





Moderator, Larry Greenwood | Member of the Board, Japan Society of Northern California & Senior Advisor, BowerGroupAsia
Larry Greenwood is a consultant advising on government relations and international economic policy, with expertise in trade, finance, development, and Asia. Larry was a career diplomat from 1976 to 2006 and served in a variety of positions in the State Department in Washington, D.C., and at U.S. embassies in Manila, Dakar, Tokyo, and Singapore. After retiring from the Foreign Service, he worked as vice president at the Asian Development Bank in Manila, Philippines, where he oversaw loan and grant operations in East and Southeast Asia and the Pacific Island countries, and as Senior Managing Director for government relations in Asia for MetLife based in Tokyo. After moving to the Bay Area in 2015 he joined the BowerGroupAsia and served as President of the Japan Society of Northern California from 2016-2019.


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September 30, 2020
4:00 pm


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